Why is my Water Salty?

by September 7, 2023Blog, Water Quality, Water Treatment Systems

Imagine floating in the ocean on a beautiful, warm, sunny day. Inevitably, a gentle wave splashes you, and you taste the saltiness of the ocean water.  You think “eck,” that is so salty, but you realize that you are at the beach, floating in the ocean and because you are on the beach, in the ocean, the salty water taste is totally worth it.

Now imagine brushing your teeth first thing in the morning and getting a swig of nice, cold, salty water.  “Eck!” What in the world is going on, you think to yourself as you sputter the water out of your mouth. This same scenario happened to me personally a few months ago.  It gave me an entirely new appreciation for our customers who call in with their concern that their water is salty!

As water treatment professionals, “Why is my water salty?” is a common question and issue that homeowners ask us. There are a variety of reasons why your water could be salty.  Join me as I walk you through our process of determining the cause so that it can be properly treated.

If you are dealing with salty water, the first thing we would recommend is to have a water treatment professional come to your location to do an onsite water test and inspection. This test is going to help determine if the cause of salty water is occurring from the water source, or because your water treatment system is not working properly.

If salty water is coming directly from your water source, you could have a naturally occurring salt well. When this is the case, we provide our customers with options that are going to significantly reduce the salt level in their water. It is important for us to determine what the customer’s wants and needs are, and what they hope the result will be. As with so many things, cost can be a factor in the treatment decision for the family, making it important for us to go over the following questions:

  • Is there a need or desire for the entire home to be treated?
  • Does the homeowner just want to treat their drinking water so that there is an improved taste? It must be noted that taste is objective—everyone has a different opinion on the taste of water!
  • What other water quality issues exist– are there iron and/or hardness concerns that need to be treated as well?

The answers to these questions can help guide the water treatment professional to offer the best system options that will meet the family’s budget, wants, and needs.

When the cause of the salty water is determined to be from the water treatment system, a water treatment professional will start the process of checking over the system. In many cases, the cause could be something as simple as the unit not being programmed correctly. A quick adjustment of settings can get the good water flowing again pretty quickly. Low water pressure is another common scenario we run into. When the water pressure is found to be too low to properly flow through a water softener, it can lead to an incomplete backwash and push salty water into the home. In other instances, you could have a unit that is not sized correctly for your home’s water quality and water usage, again leading to salty water.

If you are dealing with salty water, our best recommendation is to reach out to your local water treatment professional to get your water tested.  This should give you a better understanding of the source of your salty water, and some options on how to best treat it!

Now, let’s get back to imagining we are floating in an ocean on a beautiful, warm, sunny day…


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